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Wednesday, July 6, 2022

 

In Honor’s Defense Kick-Off Package

About the Book

Book: In Honor’s Defense

Author: Karen Witemeyer

Genre: Historical Romance

Release date: June 7, 2022

Luke Davenport has been fighting all his life–for respect, for country, and for those unable to fight for themselves. But now that his Horsemen brothers are domesticated, he’s left alone to battle the wildness within. When an opportunity arises to take a job on his own, tracking down a group of rustlers, he jumps at the chance.

Damaris Baxter has mastered the art of invisibility. Plain and quiet, she hides in books and needlework, content to be overlooked. Until her brother dies suddenly, leaving her custody of her nephew. She moves to Texas to care for Nathaniel, determined to create the family for herself that she never thought she’d have and to give him the family he desperately needs.

When Nate finds himself knee-deep in trouble, Luke’s attempt to protect him leaves Damaris feeling indebted to the Horseman. But suspicions grow regarding the mysterious death of Damaris’s brother. And the more questions they ask, the more danger appears, threatening the family Luke may be unable to live without.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

For those who love to smile as they read, bestselling author Karen Witemeyer offers warmhearted historical romance with a flair for humor, feisty heroines, and swoon-worthy Texas heroes. Voted #1 Readers’ Favorite Christian Romance Author in 2019 by Family Fiction Magazine, Karen is a multiple award-winning author and a firm believer in the power of happy endings. She is an avid cross-stitcher, tea drinker, and gospel hymn singer who makes her home in Abilene, TX with her heroic husband who vanquishes laundry dragons and dirty dish villains whenever she’s on deadline.


 

More from Karen

Meet Luke and Damaris

As the Hanger’s Horsemen series comes to a close, I’m thrilled to introduce you to Luke Davenport and Damaris Baxter. If you haven’t read the other books in this series, don’t worry. This one stands on its own just fine.

Luke

Luke Davenport is a former cavalry officer who is part of an elite squad of men known as Hanger’s Horsemen. Haunted by the horrors of war, this group of Texas legends has spent the last few years fighting for justice on behalf of those who cannot fight for themselves. Luke is Matthew Hanger’s right-hand man, but when Matt retires the Horsemen in favor of a more settled life with his new wife, Luke is left feeling adrift. So when a solo job comes his way to track down rustled cattle, he jumps at the opportunity.

Known for his strength, his size, and his skill with his fists, I modeled Luke after a pair of football players, Howie Long and JJ Watt. He’s a man of action with a bit of wildness inside, yet his ability to memorize Scripture earned him the nickname Preach. He’s a godly man with scars, seeking to find his place as his Horsemen brothers move on to new phases of life.

Damaris 


Damaris Baxter has been invisible her entire life. Plain of face and quiet of manner, she it’s the epitome of unremarkable. While she dares heroic feats and grand adventures between the covers of her favorite books, life outside the pages consists of little more than needlework and dull conversation with her great aunt. Until her brother dies under suspicious circumstances and she travels to Texas to care for her nephew. Determined that the “Texas Damaris” will be bolder and braver than her former self, she sets out to win the heart of a grieving boy and ends up mixed up in a dangerous murder plot with a handsome cowboy who actually seesher.

When creating Damaris’s character, I gave her two of my favorite hobbies—reading and cross-stitching. She shares other similarities with me as well. She’s a quiet person who dislikes making waves, but when family needs her, there’s nothing she won’t do to help. Her questionable baking skills might also have found some inspiration in my personal experience. Just ask my husband about my famous transparent chocolate chip cookies. 

Opposites Attract?

I love to explore what brings people together, and while it’s a common idea that opposites attract, I’ve always believed that there must be some core commonalities beneath the differences to bind a couple together for a lifetime. So, while Luke and Damaris seem to be stark opposites—he an adventure-seeking soldier used to solving problems with guns and fists; she a quiet, proper lady used to escaping problems with books and needlework—they actually have several core commonalities. They both crave belonging and family, they both value God’s Word, and they both have a strong, protective instinct toward those they care about. This core common ground is what serves as the foundation for their relationship.

Now that you’ve been introduced to Luke and Damaris, I hope you’ll join them on the adventure that leads them to love.

MY REVIEW 

There is nothing better than feeling like you are part of a story. The author grabbed my attention and took me along on a journey where there are cattle rustlers, a teenage boy who has lost both parents, one single aunt and a man who will do everything he can to protect the innocent. This is a western themed story that  deals with flawed characters that tug on your heart strings. 

Damaris has a big task ahead of her when she moves to Texas to  take care of her nephew. I liked her calm and patient demeanor  which helped her cope with his attitude. She isn’t very welcomed by her nephew but perhaps she can win him over. She just lost her brother but Nathaniel  has lost his mother and now his father. Can she unlock his heart that is broken and bitter? 

Luke is a character that you want on your side. He is strong, determined, faith filled and honest. When he is hired to find out who is stealing cattle from a ranch, he investigates with determination. It was a bit unsettling for the owner of the  ranch to suspect that Nathaniel may be involved . When something happens late one night, Luke puts his life on the line to save someone. Yes I would call him a hero because he stood up to four men in order to keep a certain person safe. His injuries were hard to read about but I loved how he was rescued by an unlikely person. 

The author uses these three characters to illustrate hurt, loneliness and acceptance. Damaris has always been like a wall flower. She never thought anyone noticed her and accepted that she would never get married. You can feel her pain of wanting someone to need her and love her. Nathaniel grieves for his parents and doesn’t feel like he has a family anymore. He may act out but it is only because  he is lost and needs direction. Luke had a painful past and it has affected him all these years later. I couldn’t wait to see how the author would bring  these characters together using faith. The scriptures in the  story are perfectly placed and help readers understand what emotions the characters are experiencing. 

The story has a few surprises with added danger to keep readers focused on what was going on. The author reminds us that even when we are at our lowest we can still find blessings. I think Nathaniel really needed to remember that along with all of us. Anger fuels us to be greedy, mean and not care. We need to look around us and see how blessed we are. 

The ending is one that will have you on the edge of your seat. I didn’t expect what was coming and the author delivers one powerful scene that captures the true meaning of  “laying your life down for a friend.”  It has been a real joy to read this book and I’m sad to see the series come to an end. I will be anxiously waiting for a new book written by this gifted author. 

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, June 25

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 25

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, June 26

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, June 26

Locks, Hooks and Books, June 27

Book Looks by Lisa, June 27

Where Faith and Books Meet, June 27

Bliss, Books & Jewels, June 28

Daysong Reflections, June 28

For Him and My Family, June 29

Jeanette’s Thoughts, June 29

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, June 30

Pause for Tales, June 30

lakesidelivingsite, June 30

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, July 1

Sylvan Musings, July 1

deb’s Book Review, July 2

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, July 2

Jodie Wolfe – Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, July 2

Babbling BeckyL’s Book Impressions, July 3

Bizwings Blog, July 3

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, July 4 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, July 4

Inklings and notions, July 5

Simple Harvest Reads, July 5 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Connie’s History Classroom, July 6

SodbusterLiving, July 6

Texas Book-aholic, July 7

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, July 7

Through the Fire Blogs, July 7

Splashes of Joy, July 8

Melissa’s Bookshelf, July 8

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Karen is giving away a Hanger’s Horsemen prize bundle consisting of autographed copies of all three books in the series, a custom mug, and Horsemen swag!! (U.S. Only)

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/1f45c/in-honor-s-defense-celebration-tour-giveaway



Saturday, July 2, 2022

 

Blueberry Bungalow Kick-Off Package

About the Book

Book: Blueberry Bungalow

Author: Konnie K. Viner

Genre: Fiction (Christian mystery/romance)

Release date: November 10, 2021

It’s been a year since Maci Driscoll’s husband passed unexpectedly, and she is stuck in lonely despair. As an established painter, she finds her inspiration and artistic spark is gone. In a desperate attempt to step out of her funk, Maci sells her seaside home and moves inland to a sleepy little town in Maine.

But peace and inspiration aren’t the only things she finds in Laurel Hill. The century home she buys has secrets to divulge, a long-lost couple to reunite, a murder to solve, and maybe even new love.


Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Konnie Viner is also the author of Amaryllis Journey, a 2020 Golden Scroll fiction book of the year award winner. She writes to encourage women with the assurance of God’s love and faithfulness in difficult life experiences. Her first published book is Rested Soul, Resilient Heart, Finding Hope in the Storms of Abuse and Betrayal (2017),. She holds a BS in Education from the University of Kansas and an MS in Business Management from the University of Redlands, CA. Konnie cherishes time with her three grandchildren. Her hobbies include photographing God’s beautiful creation, quilting, and reading.

 

More from Konnie

Blueberry Bungalow, a 2022 Selah Award Finalist, is a cozy mystery set in the blueberry fields of Maine, Recently widowed and struggling, Maci Driscoll moves from the seaside of Maine to quiet little Laurel Hill to escape the past and figure out who she is without her beloved husband. Never did she expect to find a long-lost letter, solve a decades-old murder, or fall in love, but she does.


Maci’s Blueberry Pie Recipe

 

Crust

3 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons salt

1 cup unsalted butter, cold

½ cup water

 

Filling

4 cups blueberries

2 tablespoons sugar

¼ cup all-purpose flour

 

Glaze

1 egg, beaten

coarse sugar

 

Directions

Preheat the oven to 425º and place a rack in the middle of the oven.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour and salt.

Add the butter and mix it into the flour using two knives or pastry blender.

Slowly add the cold water, a little at a time, and mix until the dough just comes together.

Remove the dough from the bowl and shape into 2 equal balls, flattened into discs.

Wrap each in plastic and refrigerate for at least an hour or overnight.

When ready, unwrap the dough and allow it to warm up for a minute or two.

Lightly flour your surface, then roll one disc into a circle until its large enough to fit into the pie plate with an inch of overhang.

Fold the dough into fourths, then place carefully in the pie dish.

Unfold and smooth into the dish, dressing the crust however you choose (crimping, fluting, or my favorite, just pressing into it with a fork).

Fill with the blueberry filling, then roll out the remaining disc of dough and cover the blueberries entirely, making sure to cut a few slits in the top crust for steam to escape.

Lightly brush the top crust with a beaten egg, then sprinkle with coarse sugar.

Bake for 20 minutes, then reduce heat to  350º and bake for an additional 45-55 minutes.

Keep an eye on the pie.

If the crust begins to brown too quickly, tent the pie with foil.

If the filling begins to bubble, you may also wish to place a baking sheet on the rack below the pie to catch any drips.

Remove from the oven and set on a wire rack to cool.

Serve warm.

MY REVIEW

This has been one of those stories that is a wonderful look at starting over. I adored the setting of the story and could imagine myself walking in town enjoying saying hi to everyone. The author describes the setting  as “a sleepy little town.” My first thought was this is where peace  is waiting. I was born in a big city but I have always dreamed of living in a very small town where people look out for each other. I loved having this vision of a town like Mayberry and thought the author brought the town to life with delicate touches of  scenery and a peaceful atmosphere.

Maci finds the ideal place to relocate after a tragic event in her life. Starting over is not easy and she is very guarded with her heart. I loved that she was an artist who put her feelings on canvas. Her paintings are beautiful and captures the many places that she finds healing and comfort at. We all know that saying, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” Maci’s paintings speak of many emotions and expresses the tranquil setting in each painting.  The house she buys has a history she didn’t know  about. It was fun to follow her as the mystery begins to surface. 

Wade has his share of heartache and I admired him for raising his children on his own. Helping Maci find her new home helps Wade begin to open himself up to a new friendship. They seem to really  hit it off  and I did like that they both took it slow as they start to spend more time together. Wade does have a secret that  he hasn’t shared with Maci that could change everything.

I loved that there were two mysteries in the  story that highlights forgiveness, secrets, healing and God’s plan. The faith shared in the  story  is strong and really illustrates how God is always there when we need him. It was especially nice to see how something from the past brings hope for some and for others a new beginning. 

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, July 1

An Author’s Take, July 2

Texas Book-aholic, July 3

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, July 4 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, July 4

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 5

Inklings and notions, July 6

For Him and My Family, July 7

deb’s Book Review, July 8

The Avid Reader, July 9

Blogging With Carol, July 9

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 10

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, July 11

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 12

Pause for Tales, July 12

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, July 13

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, July 14

Book Looks by Lisa, July 14

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Konnie is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and signed copy of book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/1f7f1/blueberry-bungalow-celebration-tour-giveaway



Friday, July 1, 2022

 

Oddball Ornaments Kick-Off Package

About the Book

Book: Oddball Ornaments

Author: Terry Overton

Genre: Middle Grade Christmas Story

Release date: November 16, 2021

The ornaments in the attic are excited. It’s almost Turkey Day, and they know when they start smelling turkey, they’re going to be pulled down out of the attic and hung on a tree for the humans to enjoy. After all, Box Day is all about admiring the ornaments, isn’t it? But when Grandma joins them for Turkey Day instead of Box Day and brings a bunch of new ornaments with her, the Oddball Ornaments know something isn’t right. Determined to find out the source of Grandma’s sadness and what Box Day is really about, Nutcracker sets out on a quest to climb to the top of the tree to ask Angel about the true meaning of Christmas and discovers the truth is much more wonderful than they could ever have imagined.



Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Terry Overton is a retired university professor of educational and school psychology. She has an Ed.D. in Special Education and a Ph.D. in Psychology. Her professional experience includes teaching public school, teaching at the university level, and being a college dean. She has two children and six grandchildren. Her writing and publication experiences include textbook and journal articles in the fields of special education and school psychology. She seeks to answer God’s call to share the good news and grow the church by writing Christian books and devotionals. Her book Both Sides of the Border is a Firebird Book Award winner in the categories of Cross-Genre, Socio-Political Fiction, and Women’s Fiction. Both Sides of the Border also won the American Writing Awards in the Multicultural Fiction category, Social Change category, and a finalist for the Women’s Fiction category. Her book, America of We the People was awarded the Firebird Book Award for Socio-Political and Political categories. She and her husband live in the southern tip of Texas where they enjoy semi-tropical weather and spending time with their friends and family.

 

More from Terry

Oddball Ornaments: The Story of Christmas was written one late fall while I looked at my own Christmas tree. I wondered, “If the ornaments could talk, what would they say? Would they even know why they were hung on the tree?” And that was how the book began. I played Christmas music and imagined a cast of characters like toys in Toy Story but ornaments and humans. It was such fun to write. I ran a few things by my regional experts (grand Angels) and they approved. It always means so much more when family are involved in my writing projects.

Not long after the book was out, the sequel was completed, and it will be released late summer 2022. “Oddball Ornaments: The Story of Forgiveness.”

I hope you have as much fun reading it as I did writing it!

MY REVIEW 

This was such a  fun book to read. I loved reading about the different ornaments people use and how each one is special. Looking at Christmas ornaments are a joy because it shows how unique each one  is. They are tucked away in a box till that special time when the turkey aroma fills the house. This day was different for the ornaments and their curiosity was overwhelming. 

I loved how the author used Christmas ornaments to tell the story of Jesus and how we celebrate Him on Christmas. The ornaments learn about heaven, prayer and how God loves us. The illustrations were very nice and helps tell the story. There is talk about grandpa passing away so I think maybe this book should be for children who understand about  death. The book is nicely written and would a great tool to use for families during the holidays  to share what the true meaning of Christmas is. 

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, July 2

Inklings and notions, July 3

Lights in the Dark World, July 4

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, July 5

Girls in White Dresses, July 6

Older & Smarter?, July 7

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 8

For Him and My Family, July 9

deb’s Book Review, July 10

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 11

Mary Hake, July 11

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, July 12

For the Love of Literature, July 12

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, July 12

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 13

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, July 14

Blogging With Carol, July 15

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Terry is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/1f7f2/oddball-ornaments-celebration-tour-giveaway



 


 

 MOTHER’S DAY MURDER BY TONYA KAPPES


Sometimes Mama doesn't know best!

It's Mother's Day in Holiday Junction and Violet Rhinehammer is covering all the Mother's Day events in the holiday town and not alone! Her mother, Millie Kay Rhinehammer, drops in for a visit unannounced to see exactly why her daughter decide to stay in the small town instead of coming home to Kentucky to their beloved Daniel Boone National Park.

Millie Kay is easily charmed by Mother's Day Festival, but her sweet southern charm doesn't go over well with everyone. While Violet is running all over Holiday Junction to report for the Junction Journal, Millie Kay is joining in on the festival activities.

Millie Kay and local Sally Westin get into a public fight over a dessert Millie Kay says she won fair and square in the cake walk.
And when Sally Westin is murdered, everyone is pointing the finger to the non-local in town, Millie Kay Rhinehammer.
Everyone but Violet.

Holiday Cozy Mystery Series is your one stop read for cozy mysteries set during the holidays. Some of them will be released before the intended holiday but most won't because Tonya writes these exclusively for her Patreon group and releases them as she sees fit. If you'd like more information on the Patreon group you can go to Tonya's website in her Amazon bio to check it out.



Tonya Kappes has written more than 175 southern cozy mysteries, all of which have graced numerous bestseller lists, including USA Today and Woman's World Book Club pick twice . Best known for stories charged with southern charm, emotion and humor and filled with flawed characters, her novels have garnered reader praise and glowing critical reviews. She lives with her husband in northern Kentucky. Now that her four boys have flown out of the nest, Tonya writes full-time in her camper! 

You can find her all over social media and at Tonyakappes.com. 

For weekly updates and contests, sign up for Tonya's newsletter Kappes Krew Weekly via her website or Facebook.



 MY REVIEW

I love this series and it seems like every book gets better as the series continues. The cover is very eye catching and draws readers to the book. I wonder what adventure we will find in this book?  The author has a funny southern  charm that makes me laugh throughout the book. I will tell you that you should read these books in order so you know the characters better. There are some great ones that I can’t help but like. I like that the author mentions characters from her other series in this book and helps me remember what they are up. 

 Violet hadn’t quite settled into the  town yet but her job as a reporter keeps her busy. She has an ear for news and follows it even when it may get her into trouble. The gossips are in overload in this story as a rumor has the town in an uproar. The  talk is that there is a spring that has healing powers in the water.  Violet needs an interview with the owner and maybe some water samples to check out the rumors. She isn’t very well received but it isn’t really  her fault. The whole town is trying to get their share of water and has no problem with trespassing. 

This next part I have been waiting to talk about.  Violet tries to avoid her mother’s phone calls and thinks she is safe since her mom is in another town. Do you hear a knock on the door? Let’s follow Violet as he opens the door to find her mother Millie Kay standing there. I adored this character and how she catches everyone’s attention with her charm. Can you see Violet rolling her eyes as she finds out why  her mom is there? The comedy is just starting as a cake walk finds Millie Kay and Sally fighting over a cake. It makes for a great scene as these two shove each other trying  to get to the chair first. 

Millie Kay has just begun her reign of attention getting when she surprises Violet with a decision that catches her off guard. I remember when I was in high school that I would try to avoid my mom all the time. Oh she says she was just watching out for me, but I think she was being nosey. Do you think Millie Kay is there to look after her daughter’s well-being? Sally becomes a thorn in Millie Kay’s side as they attend another function. This time I think it got a little heated. I was ready for anything as these two become frustrated with each other. Someone may have to leave town to keep the peace. 

I don’t want to give anything away but guess who turns up dead? Well to make matters worse, guess who is accused of murder? The author pulls out all the stops in this cozy mystery filled  with a charming town, characters that are simply over the top interesting and a story that keeps readers entertained. The author completely fooled me when the murderer is exposed. Get ready for another adventure in the town that celebrates holidays with festivals, fun and murder. 

I received a copy of this book from the author. The review is my own opinion.